Determining when child support ends

Some parents in Florida may be interested in learning about child support obligations and the factors that might affect how long such payments last. Understanding when the obligations might end may be beneficial for both parties. The parent who is receiving such payments may be able to take steps to prepare for the loss of income when the support order ends, and the parent who is paying the money might be able to prepare the necessary evidence for ending the order.

In many jurisdictions, support obligations may occur when the child becomes emancipated. This court process recognizes that the child in question is independent and no longer requires economic support from their parents. Emancipation can occur in a number of situations. For example, the child may be declared legally independent when they reach the age of majority, get married or join the military.

The age of majority can vary between jurisdictions. In most states, the child may be considered self-supporting when they reach the age of 18. However, in some places the threshold is set at 21. Furthermore, the age of majority rule may be ignored. For example, if the child in question has special needs, the obligation may continue past the child's 18th birthday. In addition, some agreements between parents may include language that requires continued support for the cost of a child's pursuit of higher education.

Even if the support obligation does not come to an end, a parent might seek a modification based on changes in their financial circumstances. Those who would like help with modifying or ending child support might discuss their case with an attorney who is familiar with divorce and family law. That attorney could help a client understand the different ways that they could argue for a modification in court.

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